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  • Writer's pictureHealthwatch Wokingham

Nationwide test of new public alert system - Sunday 23 April

The mobile phones of Wokingham Borough residents will emit a loud alarm and vibrate in a nationwide test of a new public alert system on 3pm on Sunday 23 April.


The test on St George’s Day coincides with major events including the London Marathon and the 2pm kick-off Premier League matches.


The National Centre for Domestic Violence (NCDV) warned people with hidden second mobile phones to turn off the alerts to avoid revealing the location of their devices.

NCDV’s Sharon Bryan said:

“Hidden second mobiles are an emergency lifeline for victims and survivors living under the constant threat of abuse, or worse. This siren test may unexpectedly reveal their presence to abusers – with disastrous consequences.”

If you have a second, concealed mobile or device for your own emergency use, and you are worried about the Government’s national emergency alert test on April 23rd 2023 setting off a loud alarm on it, please see the guidance from NCDV, below.


Please note the Government recommends you keep emergency alerts switched on for all other purposes and on primary devices.


How to turn off Emergency Alerts on Apple devices

  1. Go to the settings app of the Apple device

  2. Scroll down to find and click or tap on the ‘Notifications’ tab

  3. Scroll all the way down to the bottom to find the dedicated section for emergency alerts

  4. You will be able to see ‘Extreme Alerts’ and ‘Severe Alerts’. This may vary depending on what Apple device or Iphone you are using but these tabs will normally always be set by default to ON

  5. To turn them off, press all the toggle buttons (blue or green means on, grey is off)

How to turn off Emergency Alerts on Android devices:

  1. Go to the settings app of the android device

  2. Search for ‘Emergency Alerts’ using the search bar or magnifying glass search option at the top of the screen

  3. Click or tap on either Emergency Alerts or Wireless Emergency Alerts

  4. When you are in the device’s Emergency Alerts setting page, turn off the Emergency Alerts by pressing all the toggle buttons (Blue means on, Grey means off)


To contact the NVDC for domestic abuse and violence support, click here.

For more information about the national public alert, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/alerts


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